Lot 60 

West 'McDonald's Ranges'

Benita Clments

Watercolour on fast food package
Bid on this piece
About the Artist

Benita is the daughter of artist Gwenda Namatjira and great granddaughter of Albert Namatjira. She paints her country both in dot paintings depictions and watercolours. Benita also paints figurative images of her family and their learning of the watercolour painting tradition. Benita is teaching her husband, Ricky Connick, how to paint. She often comes to Ngurratjuta Many Hands art centre to learn from the elders and get inspiration from old photographs and stories.

About the Work

Iltja Ntjarra Many Hands Art centre, home to the "Namatjira watercolour artists", continues the tradition of the ‘Hermannsburg School’ movement.

The 'fast food' pieces came about through artists wanting to express their concerns about fast food through art. With this body of work, supported by the mentorship of leading Australian artist Tony Albert, the Iltja Ntjarra Many Hands Artists have juxtaposed their traditional watercolour style, and beautiful landscapes with powerful political and social statements.These are highly sought-after pieces, examples of which have been acquired by the National Museum of Australia. 

The artists say:

"We want to send strong messages through our art. We have health and housing concerns. Through our paintings we want to discuss care for country, and problems that we face daily. We are concerned about the future of our children. First, we feel that large food companies trade on our country and sell us sugary products. This causes health problems including diabetes, kidney failures, and the need for dialysis. We feel that those companies are lying to us about the quality of their products and taking advantage of our vulnerability. We would like to see better products in our shops. This [our artworks] is telling people we’ve got bush food out there and healthy ones. Second, we want to move back to our country, look after it and live in a good environment. This is for our kids; we’ve got to try to look after the next generation."

©  Environmental Defenders Office NT. 

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